The reputation of a small business, industry leader or an executive on the World Wide Web is shaped by data bytes in public domain. Various forums, review websites, community portals, blogs, magazines, e-Books and news websites on the internet have information in multiple flavors on your organization or its offerings. Proactive management of online reputation is, therefore, an absolute necessity if your prospective customers, clients, suppliers, business partners, stockholders, journalists etc. are on the internet.
Read on to learn about 4 fundamental online reputation management essentials:
1. Plan your campaign!
To begin with, you need to start building a well thought-out online presence. Having a well-planned online promotion campaign is important to stay focused on both short and long term goals. Online product marketing, brand promotion or reputation management campaigns should always be planned according to the niche you’re in. While digital products and software are discussed widely on forums, lifestyle products find more mentions on social networking websites. Depending upon the kind of business you’re in, you can come up with a detailed plan to build a positive reputation online.
2. Be in Control of Your Online Presence!
You can create official pages on Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, LinkedIn etc. and promote them in a planned manner. At the same time, you should also be optimizing your website and official blog for search engines. A well executed campaign ensures that people looking up on the internet for your name, business, products etc. will first come across information that has been carefully placed in the public domain! When multiple pages of your website, blog on third website or business profiles on aggregator websites rank higher up on search results engine page, not-so-great content about your business is automatically pushed down.
3. Watch What People Say about You!
News stories, reviews and blog posts get shared very quickly on the social media. For example, if a spiced up story written by a disgruntled journalist, competitor or an e-copycat with unfounded allegations on your company is exposed to 1000 people on social media networks, search engines or micro-blogging website, you can imagine the scope of damage it can cause to your company’s reputation. Therefore, it’s important that you either track your search results every day or let an online reputation management expert do it for you. With advanced information tracking tools, experts keep an eye on every bit of information published online that mentions your company, top executives, products or services.
It’s not uncommon to come across extremely unpleasant product or service reviews on the internet. It’s true that many of these reviews are fabricated. However, dissatisfied customers also make it a point to damage the reputation of a business or its offerings nowadays. Online reputation management professionals either contact people who publish negative information online to tell them the other side of the story or carefully counter a negative review published on a forum or community portal.
4. Encourage Positive Reviews
Encouraging satisfied customers to write positive reviews on the internet is a fundamental online reputation management technique that most business owners tend to ignore. Not only should your website have testimonials or feedback from customers in public domain but you should also encourage people to write about their positive experiences on Facebook Wall, Twitter, blogs and other review websites. Positive reviews can be fabricated too but they don’t help as much as original feedback written by real customers can.
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